450 Wins for Johnson

Gary Johnson, manager of Torquay United. Photo: Dave Crawford/PPAUK

Gary Johnson, manager of Torquay United. Photo: Dave Crawford/PPAUK - Credit: Dave Crawford/PPAUK

TUFC boss reaches milestone

TORQUAY United boss Gary Johnson has a few days to savour another mini-milestone after the in-form Gulls clinched the 450th win of his long managerial career at FC Halifax Town last weekend.

Johnson, who celebrated his 50th United victory at Hartlepool recently, has been in management or coaching for nearly 35 years.

After his playing days were cut short by injury, he started out as manager of Newmarket Town in 1986.

He has since worked at Cambridge United (coach and manager), Kettering Town, Watford (Head of Academy), Latvia, Yeovil Town twice, Bristol City, Peterborough United, Northampton Town, Cheltenham Town and Torquay.

He has won six promotions, second only in English senior football to current Middlesbrough and Ex-Gulls manager Neil Warnock, and the 2-1 win at Halifax was his 1,100th game in charge.

Johnson took over at Plainmoor in September 2018, winning the National League South title by 10 points eight months later, and his record here reads: P90 W51 D12 L27.

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At 65, he is the third oldest manager in the top five divisions of English football – only Warnock, 70, and Crystal Palace’s Roy Hodgson, 73, are ‘ahead’ of him.

But he said recently that he is still as motivated as ever and has no thoughts of retirement.

National League leaders United have a weekend break, as they are out of the FA Cup.

But Johnson is well into planning for two more important games next week – at Wealdstone (4th) on Tuesday night and home to Wrexham (6th) on Saturday week (Dec 5).

That’s when fans are expected to be allowed back into Plainmoor for the first time since they beat Chorley 2-0 last February 29.